Monday, June 10, 2013

Xera Plants Opening Weekend!

Xera Header copy
First off, a big THANK YOU to everyone who posted encouraging words on my last post about our presentation at Joy Creek. I'm glad to announce that it went really well, my fellow speakers did a fantabulous job (as I knew they would) and I was able to make it through the whole thing without crying...basicially, we were awesome, and it rocked ;-)

While I was pretty wiped out for the rest of Saturday, I really wanted to visit Xera Plants on their opening weekend, so the next day, Sunday, I found myself in the car heading to their new (and first ever) retail location.

signs  3392
The store is located at SE 11th and Clay...which is super close to my house. As I walked around the corner, these signs greeted excited!

retail  3391
The space isn't huge, but it's crammed with all manner of fun plants.

retail  3360
More plants!

pots  3344
Xera partnered with Bob Hyland's Potted to provide some very cool planters (including some he's already planted up, mainly with succulents).

mystery plant  3388knifophia  3346
There were all manner of plants I was unfamiliar with...I thought the ones on the left were pretty...but forgot to check out the tag, drat! I'm not the biggest fan of Knifophia, but I know most everyone else here's one for you on the right!

xera cistus  3340
One of those classic Portland plants, Cistus, a.k.a., the Rock Rose. I love this white for with the deep red blotches. The flowers really do resemble single roses...very classy, don't you think?

tiny oxalis  3345
I fell in love with this's hard to tell, but it has the tiniest leaves of any Oxalis I've ever seen!

tiarella  3358succulents  3390
In my dream garden, I'd have a shady area filled with hundreds of Tiarella, all erupting into gorgeous, frothy bloom.

rubus lineatus  3362
Another cool plant, Rubus lineatus, the pleated foliage is so nice, right?

linda  3342
I ran into Linda (of Whatsitsgarden) while I was there, and we walked along, happily chatting and pointing out cool plants.

boston  3341
She even brought her sweet little Boston Terriers with her...they are the sweetest and always give me puppy kisses (plants and puppies, does it get any better?)

succulents  3389succulent planter  3386
Xera has lots and lots of succulents...and yes, I'm not great at telling most of them forgive me if I just say "succulent".

yellow kniphofia  3351
Another Knofophia...this time with yellow blooms.

geranium rozann  3353
I was happy to see a few Geraniums in the nursery...this is my fave "Rozanne" and a hot pink the two electric combo!

succulent planter  3385succulent planter  3383
Here are some of Bob Hyland's pre-planted containers.

succulent planter  3384
I loved this one, planted with a few varieties of Hens & Chicks...the light caught them just perfectly.

epimedium  3375
Someday I'm going to find room for this Epimedium...I swear it!

succulent planter  3370succulent planter  3369
More succulent planters.

pink cistus  3374
Another Cistus, pink this time...don't you love those tissue-like blooms!

fountain  3366
This is actually the water feature I've wanted in my back yard. I love how simple it is...sort of evocative of an agrarian background...and the mix of metal and concrete really appeals to me, for some reason.

begonia  3387aeonium  3364
Begonia luxurians and Aeonium

yellow flowers  3377
I love the little pom-pom flowers of this plant, I tink it's a form of Cotula.

succulent planter  3368society garlic  3379
I love this low, black very nice...and the Society Garlic...must find room for that!

flat pots  3365
More low pots...I really dig these...and just wish I could find a place for one.

lobelia laxiflora  3371
Lobelia laxiflora, I remember this from having seen it in Ryan Miller's garden last summer.

rose  3376penstemon  3352
I really liked this simple, single rose...and the deep Mulberry purple of the Penstemon on the right.

succulent planter  3367
Did I mention succulent planters?

owners  3347
Here are two of the business partners, Bob Hyland (left) and Greg Shepherd (right).

ceonothus  3354cactus  3348
Ceonothus and Cactus.

cactus  3373
I'm one of those gardeners who touches EVERYTHING, so I always have to mentally remind myself NOT to do that with cactus.

asclepias speciosa  3357eryngium bourgatii  3393
I've been wanting one of the plants on the left, Asclepias it represents the form and style of Milkweed I grew up with...and not only does it produce those odd, chalky blooms, but also enourmous, horned seedpods that burst open with silk seeds. I can't think of a single place in my garden that it would be happy, I ended up getting a consolation Eryngium bourgatii...because Carol Klein loves they MUST be amazing, right?

I have to say, I'm enormously excited that Xera has opened a store...and that it's SO close to my house. If you are in the Portland area, you owe it to yourself to pay them a won't leave empty-handed!


  1. Could you put milkweed in your hell strip? I have oodles if you ever want to take a gamble . . .

    1. You know, I think that probably is the only place it might be happy...sadly, it's so full, I don't know where I could squeeze one in...but if something dies, I'll take you up on the offer ;-)

  2. Great pictures of the plants and containers there at Xera. Gotta make the trip down to check out that store. I really want one of those enormous low concrete bowls. And that Epimedium with the red edge.

    Glad to hear your presentation at Joy Creek went well. I knew you guys would just kill it.

    1. Isn't that Epimedium gorgeous! I'm totally playing around in my garden this week...trying to find a spot for one of those bowls!

  3. Your photography make Xera look even more special (and it is)!

  4. It's great to have a Xeric nursery in Portland, I will have to get down there. Your photos are great as usual. I'm sorry to have missed the Joy Creek class, my daughter was visiting from San Francisco. It's cool to be building up the Portland blogging community,

    1. I totally understand, Summers are so busy :-) I hope you make it down to Xera some time, it's lots of fun to see all their plants at once!

  5. Great place! Good to hear your presentation went well. I LOVE those Rock Roses, and the Oxalis, and the Lobelia ... oh, and all the succulents! This is the first year I've planted a succulent garden--never been into it much before, but it sure is fun!

  6. I've got all my Xera plants in the ground ... That day!

    1. OMG are too good...mine is still sitting on my make me look bad!

  7. Love it all! Really. I love living in a small town, but when it comes to thinking about all of the wonderful nurseries I miss.... ugh! Makes me want to move to a city! So fun they are just around the block!!! And no shame - I love those low planters too! Good placement for one is the key, I think.

    1. Agreed, they have to be placed well...not just thrown anywhere. There are definitely times I want to live in a small town (or even in the country) but it really is hard to give up the creature comforts of living in the city ;-)

  8. Congrats on your successful panel! As my old grandma Tessie used to say whenever one of us did something great, "I'm not surprised ..." And I have fallen in love with that red and white Cistus, sadly not a plant you see in this region.

    1. Hahahaha, that sounds like my Grams too ;-) Even in Portland, Cistus isn't widely planted...but it's a beautiful plant, when it's happy :-)

  9. So many great photos! If you have room for a Rubus lineatus, I'd be happy to share. It is a blackberry relative, and always seems to expand outward - not in an invasive way, but generous.

    1. If only! Sadly, I'll be lucky to find a spot for that little Eryngium! I'll have to content myself to enjoying the Rubus in other people's gardens :-)

  10. Hi Scott, that nursery is beautiful and very interesting! I wouldn't have left without a pot of that Rubus lineatus, it's awesome!
    I also like the yellow knifophia, more in the white green side of yellow, they have an almost ghostly appearance.
    PS: that dog doesn't look as sweet as you described him... but I'll take your word for it. :-)

    1. Hahahahaha...he really was a sweetheart...he seems wary at first, but if you kneel down to pet him, he's all sweetness ;-)

  11. Glad to hear that your talk at Joy Creek went well! Xera being close to your house - how lucky can a gardener get? Can't wait to visit Portland again to see this place in person!

  12. You're so lucky to have yet another fantastic nursery to choose from. Down here in the Sacramento Valley independent nurseries are closing instead of opening...

    1. Sadly, Gerhard, we've lost a few over the past few years too...I guess that's what makes the opening of a new nursery especially a cause for celebration :-)

  13. Those planters look really nice. I'm in such a different climate, it's hard to know which plants would do well. I know kniphofias are only borderline hardy. But I have to agree with Gerhard above, whenever a new nursery opens, that is cause for rejoicing.

    1. Zone 4 is definitely different from us...but I bet the Asclepias would be hardy there!

  14. Everyone around here was so excited about this opening. It's fun to see different takes on the same event by different bloggers. Your photos, as always, set yours apart.

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  17. " I really want one of those enormous low concrete bowls. And that Epimedium with the red edge."

    I really want that too..

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  19. That would have been a hoot to hear you guys speak at Joy Creek. So glad it went well. What an amazing garden/nursery it is. And now you have Xera too. I predict the Bloggers' Fling in 2014 is going to attract thousands of bloggers...

  20. I really like creative nurseries. I have 2 stands of Asclepias speciosa that found their way into my garden...they are so cool.